Millennial Adults: Leaving religion due to LGBT conflicts?

This entry is part 5 of 5 in the series Millennial Adults
Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) research chart on LGBT issue as a factor in leaving religious groups

CLICK THIS GRAPHIC to visit the Public Religion Research Institute website and read this entire PRRI report.


EACH generation
is unique; each has characteristic values.

The values of the Silent Generation were shaped by the Great Depression and World War II. Baby Boomers came of age during the feminist and sexual revolution, the civil rights movement, and the Vietnam War. The youngest adult generation—the Millennials—were the last to be born in the 20th century. They are the first “digital natives,” growing up with computers, the Internet, and social media.

Their unique views include rejection of organized religion and strong support for same-sex marriage. Is one related to the other?

This week, we’ve discussed the Millennials’ disengagement with religious and political institutions, their use of social media and the phenomena of the selfie (and we saw the world’s first selfie), the Millennials’ reluctance to get married, and their distrust of others.

Today, we consider their attitudes about LGBT issues and religion: Over three of ten Millennials (32%) are religiously unaffiliated, the highest percent of any generation. Most of these Millennials were raised in a religious tradition, reports the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI). A big reason for rejecting their religious tradition is their perception of how organized religion treats LGBT people, according to the latest PRRI survey.

Here’s the question PRRI asked: “Thinking about the reasons you are no longer affiliated with your childhood religion, how much a factor, if at all, were negative religious teachings about or treatment of gay and lesbian people?” Thirty-one percent of Millennials who disaffiliated with their religious upbringing said this was an important or very important reason why.

LGBT issues were less of a factor for the members of older generations who disaffiliated from their childhood religions. For example, only 19% of Baby Boomers who disaffiliated said that negative religious teachings about or treatment of LGBT people were a factor; the figure is only 17% for the Silent Generation.

If you are religiously unaffiliated, were you raised in a religion?

If yes, what was your reason for disaffiliating?

How much of a factor were LGBT conflicts?

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